Flat Stanley arrived courtesy of my niece Riya shortly after the holidays. Part of the instructions suggested “dressing” him to reflect either the season we were in or an activity he performed.
We took these instructions to heart and got Flat Stanley all suited up and ready to do a hive inspection complete with cowboy boots since we are in Texas after all.
We had a nice break from the cold weather this past week. It was perfect for a quick peek into the hive I requeened with the Hawaiian queen at the end of October 2012. The hope was the hive was still full of bees with plenty of honey to make it through spring. It would also be a plus if they didn’t try and kill me.
To calm the bees before the inspection, Flat Stanley first smoked the hive.
After smoking, we opened up the hive and started inspecting frames in the top most super. All 8 frames were all mostly drawn out combs of honey.
The next two supers after that were still all honey as well. The bees were also calm and only started getting a little annoyed towards the very end of the inspection. I didn’t go any further into hive because it was late in the day and the temps were starting to go down. If we have another warm weekend this week, I’ll do another inspection and go straight to the 2nd super now that I know the top three are all honey. I’ll hopefully see some activity of brood meaning the queen from Hawaii was accepted.
10 responses to “Flat Stanley Visits the Hive”
Flat Stanley is an admirable beekeeper!
It’s incredible to me that you can check your hives all winter. Is there ever a stretch of time when it’s typically inadvisable for beeks in Austin?
Generally we advise folks to basically leave your hives alone from about Thanksgiving until mid-February. But on a day like today when it gets up to 71 degrees, it affords us the opportunity to check in on honey stores and pests. Flat Stanley and I saw some SHB’s still lurking in the hive during inspection.
Ouch. I’m relieved we don’t have those nasties up here. And on a related note, the cold snap in ABQ will help reduce the number of feral AHB hives which should make for a gentler summer.
You guys really don’t have SHB’s? I thought those things where everywhere. I’m assuming the NM climate just doesn’t suit them? I would also like a nice cold snap to help reduce the AHB population but I’m not sure we will get one this year.
Nope, no SHB. I think it’s simply too dry here.
What a great idea, I love Flat Stanley!
Maybe Flat Stanley can visit England and enjoy some tea and cake in Ealing 🙂
That would be amazing!
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